Philosophy Professor at UNC Chapel Hill
Course website: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~grussell/Phil502-F14.html
Class Times: Tuesdays 11-1.30pm
Class Location: Wilson Hall, Fireplace room (212)
Instructor: Gillian Russell
Email: grussell – at – artsci – dot – wustl – dot – edu
Office Hours: Thursday 12-1pm or by appointment, Wilson Hall 209
This course will be a broad introduction to some of the central themes and theories of analytic philosophy in the 20th century. It is open to all and only first year graduate students in philosophy and PNP. It will offer many opportunities to develop skills in writing and presenting philosophy.
The two main books for the course will be:
Philosophical Analysis in the Twentieth Century: volume 1 : The Dawn of Analysis – Scott Soames (Princeton University Press, 2003)
Philosophical Analysis in the Twentieth Century: volume 2: The Age of Meaning – Scott Soames (Princeton University Press, 2003)
Assigned reading each week will include 1-3 chapters from these books, plus some original writings from the subjects of those chapters.
Many of these items are on the ares site for the course, which you can find here:
An exception is Wittgenstein’s Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, which we’ll read in full. I’ve put it on 2 hour physical reserve at Olin Library, but you might find it more convenient to buy your own.
Tuesday 26th August: No pre-assigned reading.
Tuesday 2nd September: “A Defence of Common Sense" – G.E. Moore
Soames v.1, Ch1 & 2 "Common Sense and Philosophical Analysis"
Tuesday 9th September: “Knowledge by Acquaintance and Knowledge by Description” – Bertrand Russell http://www.jstor.org/stable/4543805
Soames v.1 Ch 5 "Logical Form, Grammatical Form and the Theory of Descriptions"
(I’m inclined to think there is a good chance that you’ve all read Russell’s “On Denoting” before, but if you somehow missed it, it would be a good idea to look at that for this week: http://www.jstor.org/pss/2248381)
Tuesday 16th September: Pages 35-123 of The Philosophy of Logical Atomism – Bertrand Russell
Soames v1 Ch7 & 8 “Logical Constructions and the External World” and “Russell’s Logical Atomism”
Tuesday 23rd September:
No class this week.
Tuesday 30th September:
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus – Ludwig Wittgenstein.
Soames v.1 Chs 9, 10 & 11. "The Metaphysics of the Tractatus," "Meaning, Truth and Logic in the Tractatus" and "The Tractarian Test of Inteligability and its Consequences"
Tuesday 7th October: “Empiricism, Semantics and Ontology” – Rudolf Carnap
Soames v.1 Chs 12 & 13 "The Logical Positivists on Necessity and A priori Knowledge" and "The Rise and Fall of the Empiricist Criterion of Meaning"
Tuesday 14th October: “Two Dogmas of Empiricism” – Willard Van Orman Quine http://www.jstor.org/stable/2181906
Soames v.1 Chs 16 & 17 "The analytic and the synthetic, the necessary and the possible, the apriori and the aposteriori," "Meaning and Holistic Verificationism"
Tuesday 21st October:
Sections 1-133, 143-155, 179-202 and 243-315 from the Philosophical Investigations – Ludwig Wittgenstein.
S2 Chs 1 and 2 "Rejection of the Tractarian Conception of Language and Analysis" and "Rule following and the Private Language Argument"
Tuesday 28th October:
"Truth" – Peter F. Strawson http://www.jstor.org/stable/3327019
Soames v.2 chapter 5. "Strawson’s Performative Theory of Truth"
Tuesday 4th November: “The Logic and Conversation" – Paul Grice http://www.ifbl.tu-dresden.de/die_tu_dresden/fakultaeten/philosophische_fakultaet/iph/thph/braeuer/lehre/grice_ss_2009/LogicAndConversation.pdf
Soames v.2 Ch 9 "Language Use and the Logic of Conversation"
Tuesday 11th November: S2, Ch 10. "The Indeterminacy of Translation"
“Translation and Meaning” from Word and Object – W.V.O. Quine.
Tuesday 18th November: "Truth and Meaning" – Donald Davidson http://www.springerlink.com/content/m2608j4157278l66/
Soames v.2 ch 12 “Theories of Truth as Theories of Meaning”
Tuesday 25th November: Lectures I and II of Naming and Necessity – Saul Kripke
Soames v.2 chs 14 & 15 "Names, Essence and Possibility" and "The Necessary A priori."
Tuesday 2nd December: Reading: "Must do better" from The Philosophy of Philosophy – Timothy Williamson
“Epilogue – The Era of Specialisation” in Soames v2.
A major goal of the proseminar is to give you many opportunities to hone your philosophical skills in a friendly environment. We will focus on three: i) giving 10-15 minute presentations, ii) presenting someone else’s position clearly in 1000 words and iii) outlining a philosophy paper in which you argue for a thesis of your own (a series of bullet points covering at most two sides.) Each week, up to and including November 11th, you will have to do one of these, based on the reading for that week. We will set up a rotating schedule. (That’s 10 weeks, and we’ll have 2 presentations each week, so you will end up doing a total of 4 presentations, 2 expository papers and 2 outlines.) There will be no final paper or exam for this class.
Your grade for the class will be calculated by averaging your best three presentations (40%), your best expository paper (30%) and best outline (30%) i.e. your worst grade for each type of assignment will be dropped.
Any cases of suspected plagiarism, or other problems with academic integrity, will be reported to Dean Killen in his role as head of the academic integrity committee.